Big picture: A new Call of Duty game is always one of the best-selling releases each year, but the latest game has broken a decade-old franchise record. The numbers represent a positive turnaround for the series after last year’s game suffered disappointing commercial results.
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II made over $800 million in its first three days on the market, more than any other game in the franchise’s 19-year history. According to Activision, this performance outperforms the opening weekend box office of iconic Hollywood films like Top Gun: Maverick and Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness.
The franchise’s previous highest-selling record was 2011’s Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (sequel to the original 2009 Modern Warfare 2). The success of Modern Warfare II marked a turning point after last year’s Call of Duty: Vanguard failed to outsell 2020’s Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War.
Vanguard contributed to Activision losing 63 million monthly active users during 2021. The company is hopeful that Modern Warfare II and Call of Duty: Warzone 2.0 – the sequel to its successful free spin-off – can bring players back.
For those asking what those rumors are, there is an unconfirmed rumor that Sledgehammer’s Advanced Warfare 2 will release in 2025. We can’t confirm this at all, and it’s unlikely that Activision won’t give the 2024 Treyarch game a two-year cycle. pic.twitter.com/Bm0rnAiznL
— CharlieIntel (@charlieINTEL) October 5, 2022
One of the disappointing decisions recently made by Activision regarding Modern Warfare II was shutdown Steam Family Sharing just three days after launch. Some players expressed dissatisfaction with the $70 purchase of the title, intending to share it with close friends and family members. Others suspect that this decision is directed against fraud.
As for future Call of Duty games, new reports this week malfunction Rumor has it that a sequel to Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare is in development, due out in 2025. Activision has delayed the release of the game it intended to release in 2023, making the following year the first of 20 without a new Call of Duty game. The company plans to fill this gap with the paid Modern Warfare II expansion.
The switch could signal a new standard rhythm for franchise releases. Activision may start releasing Call of Duty games every two years rather than annually to ease its infamous hectic production cycles, meaning there won’t be a new game in 2025.
Whatever happens, Microsoft has promised that if its deal to buy Activision closes, future games will still be released on the PlayStation for the foreseeable future. Microsoft has said this repeatedly in response to Sony’s concerns about the acquisition, which is under scrutiny from UK, US and EU regulators.